Stepping Stones Hosts Inaugural Friendsgiving Fundraiser

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Celebrated chef spices up Nov. 12 event which supports the museum’s Healthy Children, Healthy Communities® initiative.

FriendsGiving

The first-ever FriendsGiving event is a rare chance to enjoy an out-of-this-earth taste experience with celebrated Chef Justin Walker from the Earth at Hidden Pond Restaurant in Maine.

The award-winning Stepping Stones Museum for Children is all about children’s educational, onsite exploration, and now they’re giving adults a chance to travel to Kennebunkport without leaving Connecticut.

The first-ever FriendsGiving event is a rare chance to enjoy an out-of-this-earth taste experience with celebrated Chef Justin Walker from the Earth at Hidden Pond Restaurant in Maine. The festive fundraiser on Nov. 12 will launch a new era of the Healthy Children, Healthy Communities® initiative at the museum.

Since 2006, Healthy Children, Healthy Communities® has educated millions of families nationwide about health and wellness through interactive exhibits, programming and key partnerships with leading health experts. With its community’s support, Stepping Stones is looking to expand and re-imagine the program’s offerings.

“Everything and everyone requires continual nourishment in order to flourish – whether it’s a child’s health and wellness, our museum’s teaching gardens or our community’s interest to collaborate on issues important to children and families,” said Rhonda Kiest, CEO and President of Stepping Stones Museum for Children. “This event is a unique opportunity for old friends and new alliances to gather for an extraordinary culinary experience and learn about our exciting plans for our Healthy Children, Healthy Communities® initiative through which the museum addresses these areas of focus.”

Vogue.com reporter Victoria Lewis called Walker’s restaurant, Earth at Hidden Pond, “one of the top restaurants in Maine and absolutely worth a visit for a meal (or two). The menu is seasonal and hyper-local, with many of the ingredients sourced from Hidden Pond's own farm.”

Zagat lists Earth at Hidden Pond as one of the “Top 10 Reasons to Drive to Kennebunkport” as the restaurant embodies the rustic charm and flavor of Maine.

For FriendsGiving, Walker and his wife Danielle will create a Thanksgiving-inspired harvest menu of signature dishes, time-tested from their acclaimed restaurant and seventh-generation family farm.

“Our philosophy is bringing the outside in, offering a vibrant, refined take on farm-to-table fare,” said Walker. “Our vision embraces community and supports the relationship between the world of outstanding cuisine and the farmers in the field. It’s a perfect match for the goals of the Healthy Children, Healthy Communities® at Stepping Stones.”

The FriendsGiving dinner will be held at Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk. The cocktail and hors d’oeuvres hour begins at 6:30 pm and dinner will be served at 7:30 pm Single ticket prices start at $275 and a table of 10 can be reserved for $2,250.

“We are extremely grateful to Justin and Danielle for generously helping us to transform our Spectacular Spaces into a magical environment that reflects their simple, yet innovative dining style,” said FriendsGiving Event Chair Kris Granetz of Wilton. “We invite you to grab your friends, enjoy cocktails and an exquisite harvest dinner and support the important work of this gem of a local resource that we have in Stepping Stones Museum for Children.”

FriendsGiving is sponsored by the Foster Family Fund, as well as Kris and Marc Granetz at the diamond level and Fairfield County Bank at the bronze level. Serendipity is serving as a media sponsor. Additional sponsorships are available and designed to celebrate and honor corporate and personal commitments in Stepping Stones Museum for Children. For information about opportunities, please contact Linda McDonald at 203 899 0606, ext. 246 or visit http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org/friendsgiving.

For more information about Chef Justin Walker and his Earth at Hidden Pond restaurant in Kennebunkport, Maine, visit http://www.earthathiddenpond.com.

About Stepping Stones Museum for Children:

Stepping Stones Museum for Children is an award-winning, private, non-profit 501 (c) (3) children’s museum committed to broadening and enriching the lives of children and families. For more information about Stepping Stones, to book a field trip or schedule a class, workshop or facility rental call 203-899-0606 or visit http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org.

Stepping Stones Museum for Children is located at 303 West Ave., Norwalk, Conn., exit 14N and 15S off I-95. Museum hours are Labor Day through Memorial Day, Tuesday-Sunday and holiday Mondays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; and Memorial Day through Labor Day, Monday-Sunday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults and children and $10 for seniors. Children under 1 are free.

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